Paramount Pictures

Now playing in cinemas nationwide

When the film “Zodiac” was first announced, audiences and film folk alike had to wipe a bit of drool from their collective chins. Director David Fincher (“se7en” and “Fight Club”) helms the story of the menacing serial killer that shot and stabbed a whole lot of people willy nilly and then sent cute little cryptic messages to the reporters at the local papers. The cast is made up of Jake Gyllenhaal, Mark Ruffalo and Robert Downey, Jr. Supporting players include Brian Cox, Anthony Edwards, Dermot Mulroney and Chloë Sevigny. Sounds brilliant, right? Well, after sitting through the film with Mandy (all 2 hours and 40 minutes of it), I can tell you that it’s slow going. This is a case that spans about twenty-five years (somebody call hair and makeup!) and has about as many characters involved as Oliver Stone’s “JFK.” While the actors are all fantastic, the cinematic style doesn’t have the grit and gore of “se7en” or the scrappy spunk of “Fight Club.” From the opening scene, there is a very creepy, methodic pacing that leads us into the story. The music is not overly dramatic and there are no boogeymen jumping out of closets. Once or twice you will be nervous enough to have sweaty palms or grab your neighbor’s arm. But really, this telling is all about the facts and the details. So much so that it feels more like a doctoral thesis than a thriller.